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‘Suffering from our success’: Julie Bishop urges rethink of climate policy and government

Ms Bishop will also note that “interestingly, opinion polls consistently show strong community support for action on climate change”.

“I don’t see a solution to the current impasse, but investors need regulatory certainty given the large and long-term investment needed for building energy generating capacity,” she will tell business leaders.

“The closest we have come to achieving bipartisan consensus with Labor, sufficient to get an energy policy through Parliament, was the National Energy Guarantee – no longer Coalition policy.”

Ms Bishop quit the frontbench following the coup against Mr Turnbull in August, in which she stood for the leadership but was knocked out in the first round with just 11 votes.

Moderate Liberals threw their votes behind Mr Morrison in order to prevent a head-to-head contest between Ms Bishop and Peter Dutton, on the assumption Mr Dutton would win.

Since then, Ms Bishop and Mr Turnbull have called on Mr Morrison to reach a deal with Labor on the energy guarantee, which the opposition has pledged to adopt if it forms government.

While Ms Bishop has stated her intention to recontest her blue-ribbon Perth seat of Curtin, many colleagues believe she is securing her successor and will quit politics at the election.

In comments that may suggest she is positioning for the Liberal leadership after the poll, Ms Bishop will tell her Hong Kong audience of the “conundrum” of facing Australian politics.

“Might I suggest that Australia may be suffering somewhat from our success?” Ms Bishop will ask, referring to the country’s 28 years of uninterrupted economic growth, 5 per cent rate of unemployment and high standard of living.

“Some Australians believe the government is doing too much, interfering in our lives – some believe the government is doing too little and should be solving all of society’s ills,” she says.

“Others still believe whatever the government is doing, it is wrong.

“We must do more to explain the limits of what government can and cannot do and have the courage to articulate longer term policies and responses.

“For if the public believes government should be achieving more than is possible, there will be a permanent state of disappointment and mistrust.”

Michael Koziol is a political correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.

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